In May 2012, Audi trademarked the “RS8” nameplate, confirming that the Audi A8 will indeed get a more powerful version. Still, until now our spy photographers have yet to catch this car testing, so it is time to start speculating a little bit about this future sports luxury sedan.
The trademark was not the only confirmation coming from Audi about its plans to expand the RS lineup. At the beginning of this year Audi confirmed that in the upcoming months, we are going to see more RS models launched onto the market with the RS7 being the first one and the Q3 RS to follow.
The question racing through everyone’s mind is how powerful does Audi want to make the RS8, considering the new S8 already received an amazing 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine with an output of 520 horsepower.
Updated 02/11/2013: Today we have created a rendering of the upcoming Audi RS8 — you can see it above. We hope you like it!
Hit the jump to read more about the next Audi RS8.
Image Note: The above image is not an official image of the Audi RS8; it is a TopSpeed rendering.
Imagining what the next RS8 will look like is not very difficult: just take an Audi S8 and add in some RS elements. This means the car will get new front and rear bumpers, a high-gloss black front grille with honeycomb structure, add-on parts in matte aluminum, a power-extending spoiler, a new diffuser, and a new exhaust system with two elliptical tailpipes. Audi will also offer a new set of wheels combined with red brake calipers for an even more aggressive appearance.
For the interior, Audi will try to combine luxury with an extreme sporty feeling. There will be lots of carbon-fiber and aluminum trim elements used, sports seats wrapped in black Alcantara and leather with contrasting red stitching, plus, of course, a smattering of RS8 badges.
The engine to be used in the next RS8 is still a mystery; still we can guess pretty accurately on that. Currently, the most powerful A8 — the S8 — is powered by a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine with an output of 520 horsepower, meaning that the RS8 version has to deliver a little bit more.
That leads us to the conclusion that Audi will likely be use the same engine found in the RS7: a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 engine that delivers a total of 560 horsepower. The engine will be mated to a standard eight-speed tiptronic gearbox and will send the power to all four wheels, thanks to Audi’s quattro permanent all-wheel-drive system.
|Engine|| 4.0-Liter Twin-Turbo V-8 (Est.) |
|Output|| 560 Horsepower (Est.) |
|Transmission|| Eight=Speed Tiptronic (Est.) |
|Driveline|| Quattro AWD |
|Acceleration (0-60)|| 3.8 Seconds |
|Top Speed|| 174 mph (Est.) |
We hope that Audi will offer the upcoming RS8 in the U.S., but there will be a pretty big problem: its huge price. The 2013 S8 is priced at a wallet-draining $110k – a massive increase over the standard A8, which is priced at $72k. Of course, this doesn’t mean we will see the same difference between the S8 and the RS8, but still you should expect to pay at least $130k for it.
2014 Mercedes S-Class AMG
It’s true, all we have on the next Audi RS8 is speculation, but considering the S8 already develops a total of 520 ponies, it’s safe to assume that the model will be a little bit superior to the next-generation Mercedes S-Class AMG. When the new S-Class AMG arrives on the market, it will be powered by an AMG twin-turbo 5.5-liter V-8 engine that will deliver up to 550 horsepower.
When it comes to the price, the current-generation S63 AMG is priced t $140k and we expect pretty much the same price for the next generation. So in pricing, the two models will be pretty close.
When you are looking for an elegant, luxury sedan, an Audi is a good choice. When you look for power, but you don’t care much about the look, then a Bimmer is the right choice - not because we agree, but because most people see BMWs as having a stouter stance and more raw power. However, when Audi announced it has plans to further expand its RS lineup, everyone knew that was about to change. With the line of RS models, you can have both power and elegance in the same car; and this is exactly what the next RS8 gives you.
Engine output seems to be very impressive
Looks very aggressive
Will be faster than any A8 out there
Still no confirmation of its availability on the U.S. market